VELscope® Oral Cancer Screening

Oral cancer is often deemed the “forgotten disease,” because it kills more people than testicular cancer, cervical cancer and cancer of the brain each year and receives little publicity in return.  Each year, over 30,000 Americans contract oral cancer, and only 57% of these people will live for more than five years without treatment.

Many people believe that if they abstain from tobacco and alcohol use, oral cancer will not affect them.  Tobacco and alcohol use does contribute to oral cancer; however, 25% of those diagnosed abstain from both substances.

The best way to stay protected from oral cancer is to get annual oral cancer screenings.  Most dentists perform an oral cancer exam during a regular dental checkup.  The FDA-approved VELscope® offers dentists another examination tool to help detect oral cancer in its earliest stages.  The VELscope® is a blue excitation lamp, which highlights precancerous and cancerous cell changes.

How does the VELscope® work?

The VELscope® uses Fluorescence Visualization (FV) in an exciting new way.  Essentially, bright blue light is shone into the mouth to expose changes and lesions that would otherwise be invisible to the naked eye.  One of the biggest difficulties in diagnosing oral cancer is that its symptoms look similar to symptoms of less serious problems.  The VELscope® System affords the dentist important insight as to what is happening beneath the surface.

The healthy soft tissue of the mouth naturally absorbs the VELscope® frequency of blue light. Healthy areas beneath the surface of the soft tissue show up green, and the problem areas become much darker.

Here are some of the advantages of using the VELscope® System:

  • Can be combined with digital photography.
  • Detects lesions, white and red patches.
  • Detects problem areas that cannot be seen under white light.
  • Exposes precancerous and cancerous tissue.
  • FDA-approved.
  • Helps dentists check that diseased soft tissue is completely removed.
  • Helps diagnose oral cancer in its earliest stages, exponentially increasing the chance of survival.
  • Quick, painless examinations.

How is the VELscope® examination performed?

The VELscope® examination literally takes only two or three minutes.  It is a painless and noninvasive procedure that saves many lives every single year.

Here is a brief overview of what a VELscope® examination is like:

Initially, the dentist will perform a regular visual examination of the whole lower face.  This includes the glands, tongue, cheeks and palate as well as the teeth.  Next a pre-rinse solution is swilled around the mouth for slightly less than a minute.  The dentist provides special eyewear to protect the integrity of the retinas.  The lights in the room are dimmed to allow a clear view of the oral cavity.

The small VELscope® is bent to project blue light inside the mouth.  Lesions and other indicators of oral cancer are easily noticeable because they appear much darker under the specialized light.

If symptoms are noted, the dentist may take a biopsy there and then to determine whether or not this is oral cancer.  The results of the biopsy dictate the best course of action from there. Otherwise, another oral cancer screening is performed in one year’s time.

If you have any questions or concerns about oral cancer screening or the VELscope® system, please contact our office.

Synergy Dental Group

Synergy Dental Group is a premier center for smiles, helping patients achieve exceptional oral health through individualized care.

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Our Testimonials

Max Bomberger

For over 10 years I have been going here and I have watched them grow into the best dental facility that Northern California has to offer! The staff is awesome, and the service is professional. I absolutely love it here!

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Greg Q in SANTA ROSA, CA

She is a very caring exceptional dentist that explains and gives me all possible options to make my decision. The same staff has been there for ages. I feel special when I go there. Everyone remembers my name.

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B R. Sonoma, CA

This was not easy for me, as I am not fond of going to the dentist, but I loved my dentist. I feel fortunate that I have found Dr Hubenette and her staff. Everyone is very kind and considerate. Very gentle which I truly appreciated. They explain everything that they are doing and pay close attention to detail. Dr Hubenette even called to be sure all was well after the procedure. Thank you, ladies.

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Julie C.

Dr. Hubinette is fabulous -- a professional, an artist, and a great dentist. I can't say enough about her and her staff. In addition to the nuts and bolts of my dental health, she REALLY cared about my smile..... as much as I did. I know, because I ended up cracking my front tooth and she wasn't satisfied with the result, until it was a perfect match. I will be forever grateful, every time I smile...........................

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Kathleen L.

Dr. Kimberly Hubenette of Synergy Dental Group is the best and most Compassionate dentist in town, hands down! Not only is she my dentist, but she is now my husband's dentist. Recently he had an emergency toothache on a holiday 3-day weekend and Dr. Hubenette was the only dentist in our town who could be reached and was willing to help him. In fact, she came into her office and got him out of pain very fast. I don't know of any other dentist that would have done this! I can't say enough good things about Dr. Hubenette and her practice!

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Our Address

Synergy Dental Group
660 Third Street West,
Sonoma, CALIFORNIA 95476

707-938-9066

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Monday 8:00 AM 5:00 PM
Tuesday 8:30 AM 6:00 PM
Wednesday 8:00 AM 5:00 PM
Thursday 7:30 AM 6:00 PM
Friday 8:00 AM 5:00 PM
Saturday 9:00 AM 3:00 PM
Sunday Closed

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